The NBA responded to LeBron James’ Twitter tirade in regards to the league’s condensed schedule.
After James went on a rant claiming after Kawhi Leonard’s reported ACL damage that the NBA’s 2020-21 schedule was liable for an elevated damage price, NBA spokesperson Mike Bass stepped in to defend the league and rebut James’ declare.
“Damage charges had been nearly the identical this season as they had been throughout 2019-20 whereas starter-level and All-Star gamers missed video games as a result of damage at related charges because the final three seasons,” Bass stated, per Marc Stein of the New York Instances.
“Whereas accidents are an unlucky actuality of our sport, we acknowledge the big sacrifices NBA gamers and groups have made to play by means of this pandemic.”
Nonetheless, the NBA’s interpretation of “nearly the identical” could also be a bit liberal.
In accordance with a narrative by ESPN’s Baxter Holmes, the typical variety of gamers sidelined per sport as a result of damage, non-COVID-19 sickness or relaxation this season was 5.1. That is 5 p.c larger than the next-highest common per season of 4.8.
That very same story outlines that the 2020-21 NBA All-Stars missed 370 of a potential 1,944 video games (19 p.c). That is the very best mark in NBA historical past as effectively.
Within the playoffs, Kyrie Irving, James Harden, Joel Embiid, Kawhi Leonard, Jamal Murray, Donovan Mitchell, Anthony Davis, Jaylen Brown, Kemba Walker and Mike Conley have all missed time both as a result of accidents suffered in the course of the common season or accidents suffered in the course of the playoffs.
May that be as a result of some unhealthy luck? Maybe, however the schedule and lack of coaching definitely performed a task as effectively, as executives and trainers outlined in Holmes’ story.
“[We] nonetheless have a contracted offseason [rest period] and simply had a really excessive density of video games; cannot think about we’re within the clear,” stated a Western Convention playoff group’s athletic-training official.
“I do must suppose it will likely be higher subsequent 12 months with a extra regular schedule, however we will not make certain the quantity of load these gamers shall be carrying into the beginning of camp subsequent season.”
So, whereas the NBA is defending their condensed schedule, it definitely looks like James has a degree.